Atlanta gets ready for the Olympics opening ceremony

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The Independent Online
Theatre of dreams: Friday (8.30pm local time) sees the opening ceremony of the Atlanta Olympics - the centenary of the first modern games. The Georgia Dome (above) will be one of the focal points as it plays host to both the basketball and gymnastics. For the first time at a major gymnastics championship, tickets were sold at the Dome for yesterday's practice session (far left). More than 9,000 people bought seats priced at $22 (pounds 14) and $11 for the men's compulsory routines. An advance sale of 21,700 tickets has been made for today's work-out by the women, rising to 30,000 for their routines tomorrow. A young boy (left) watches the male gymnasts go through their paces in preparation for the start of the sport's programme on Saturday.

Photographs: David Ashdown